A Comp ( Workers’ Compensation) Hearing is a statutory right whereby a claim for benefits from an on the job injury or occupational disability is presented. The nature of the ” Hearing” has in recent times been under attack. Traditionally, a hearing has been the presentation “in person” before a trier of fact, usually a law judge but not always with a presentation of the claim through documentation and/or oral evidence. All parties to the claim have the right to representation by someone who will promote their interpretation of the facts and issues. The workers’ compensation board (WCB) has issued various policy statements as to what constitutes the elements necessary before a formal hearing can be scheduled. In short form, the preliminary elements required are the filing of a formal written claim known as a c-3. The filing of medical reports most commonly known as a c-4 with an opinion from the health provider alleging that the condition presented was caused by a work situation and the filing by the employer usually by submitting a form known as a c-2 containing the employers’ information, if any, about the claim . This should be followed by a formal employer position document or response in the form of a c-6, c-7 or c-9. Not all claims require continued involvement by “a trier of fact” unless a dispute over the compensability of the claim or further treatment is questioned. Employers and their insurance carriers may make voluntary payments regardless but, the claimants rights are not formally protected by the full scope of the Workers’ Compensation Law (WCL) until formally established by a written finding known as a decision of the WCB. In cases where continuing claims are presented; the case is set for presentation of the claim subject to the Workers’ Compensation Law (WCL) as well as the rules and regulations of the WCB.
As stated in this blog previously, a full and complete discussion regarding a specific case or your rights concerning a specific fact pattern should be conducted in person with a representative so that it can be fully evaluated. This blogg is merely presented as general information and can not be considered a formal legal opinion on any specific case.